Managed a grocery run in between storms. This is getting insane. My kids have been out of school because of weather nearly as often as they have been in school. AND we have yet another round coming later in the week. BG has had her Wednesday dance class canceled 3 consecutive weeks and will FINALLY get to go tonight. I am officially ready for spring, but can we skip the storms this year?
There are reasons I do not do cakes for a living. One is that, even though I can make a cake that looks really cool, they aren’t always very clean or truly professional quality polished. I seriously love this cake. It is so pretty, but it is a tad sloppy in places. That and, no matter what I do, I cannot get the images to do justice to how amazing this actually looks IRL. All in all, I’m really pleased with how this turned out.
This is far from perfect. The layers looked amazing until I stacked them and then realized that because of the way I made the bottom layer, I had a significant gap that needed to be covered. I ended up filling it with a piece of “trim” that isn’t actually on the costume. The other big issue I ran into was several of my fondant detail pieces I made ahead of time cracked when I put them on the cake. That and the tiara piece (done in royal icing and a first attempt at ever using this method) also broke when I tried to take it off my template. I was able to fix some of these so they don’t show much, but still… all the reasons why I only do this for fun.
I know that I’m hard on myself, so I’m still taking this project as a pretty big win since I made a cake that looks incredible and matches closely to the actual costume, which was my goal. That and BG is going to be over the moon when she finally gets to see it.
Just dropping in real quick while I take a moment before I dig back into this latest cake project.
Like fondant, buttercream icing/frosting can be finicky. It took me a while to find a recipe that I like. Both to use and to eat.
Fondant is something I have a love hate relationship with. Basic, store bought fondant, while technically edible, tastes nasty. For me, if I’m going to go to the effort of making a cake, I want it to taste good. Every part of it. After my first couple of times using the store bought garbage, I started to do some research and found a recipe I really like. It is still crazy sweet, but it actually tastes good. My kids love it. MC often eats that and the icing and leaves the cake.
I’ll be working on cake the next several days. BG decided that she really did want the pointe costume cake so I’m all in on working on it. It will be another ambitious project, but having done a costume cake twice now, I have some confidence that this will turn out pretty good. I don’t have to have this done until the first of next week, but BG has a shopping thing with a friend over the weekend and I need to get as much done before then as possible.
Today’s to do list:
Make up 2 batches of fondant
Make batch of royal icing
Use royal icing to make tiara (template already drawn and ready to go)
Work on more sequins pieces if I have time
Non-Cake To Do: Run through L’s proofread notes and make any changes. Since she said there really wasn’t much, I don’t think that is going to take a whole lot of time (fingers crossed). Get it ready and send off to Hubby for the final read through. ALMOST THERE!!
I first experimented with taking photos of frozen bubbles last year. At the time, I was somewhat pleased by the results, especially because I’d never done it before. But, I didn’t have my macro lens yet so what I got wasn’t actually all that good. When I went to play again the other day and seeing the images on my tiny camera screen or on my phone, I didn’t think these were going to come out all that much better. Until I got them on my computer. Dang! What a world of difference!
Blurb: POLITICS ARE HELL
Kaylin wasn’t sent to the West March to start a war. Her mission to bring back nine Barrani might do just that, though. She traveled with a Dragon, and her presence is perceived as an act of aggression in the extremely hostile world of Barrani-Dragon politics. Internal Barrani politics are no less deadly, and Kaylin has managed—barely—to help the rescued Barrani evade both death and captivity at the hands of the Consort.
Before the unplanned “visit” to the West March, Kaylin invited the Consort to dinner. For obvious reasons, Kaylin wants to cancel dinner—forever. But the Consort is going to show up at the front door at the agreed-upon time. The fact that she tried to imprison Kaylin’s guests doesn’t matter at all…to her.
A private Barrani Hell, built of Shadow and malice, exists beneath the High Halls. It is the High Court’s duty to jail the creature at its heart—even if it means that Barrani victims are locked in the cage with it. The Consort is willing to do almost anything to free the trapped and end their eternal torment. And she needs the help of Kaylin’s houseguests—and Kaylin herself. Failure won’t be death—it will be Hell. And that’s where Kaylin is going.
It pains me greatly to write this, but… I didn’t love this book. I have adored this series (and pretty much every single thing put out by this author) from the very beginning, but…
There really wasn’t anything new in this book. Kaylin does all the same kinds of things that Kaylin has always done. There really wasn’t any real growth for her in this book. That and like the last one, I don’t feel like I got enough of the other characters that I want to have page time, mostly Severn and Nightshade. We didn’t even get to see Marcus or the Hawklord in this book. I’m not dissing this. It was not a bad book at all. It was still really good. I just didn’t feel like it did much to move the series forward. There was so much time spent on dealing with the cohort, in this and the last one, that nothing else has room to develop.
Things seem to be getting crowded for Kaylin in this series. She has become a collector, of people and magical creatures, and there are only so many new people/things you can introduce before you lose the important ones that have been there from the beginning. You see it heavily in this book.
I would love to see the next book having more of the feel of the earlier books where more time is spent with Kaylin actually doing things rather than massive chunks of time spent in her head. Characters need to grow. Absolutely. But there are things about characters that readers fall in love with and if you leave those things behind, you may end up leaving the readers behind as well. This book rides very close to that line for me.
The snow we got the other day was so perfect. It was crazy cold and the snow wasn’t heavy and wet, so what fell was full of perfect snow crystals. This is one of several crazy cool shots that show the intricacies of snowflakes. The shot itself isn’t perfect, but I adore that snowflake in the middle. I kind of kicked myself for taking time out of working on edits to take photos, but… worth it! And… I GOT MY EDITS DONE!
Today was perfect weather to play with ice bubbles. Between that and the also perfect snow we got with the crazy low temps, I loaded up on some amazing shots over the last couple of days, but I’m still going through them all. For now, here is one of my favorite bubble shots.
Just as I was getting ready to post this, seeing it on a larger screen rather than my small one, I realized that what you see looks just like what water does as it is getting ready to boil. Only this is ice. Funny the things you see when you stop to look.
Originally, I didn’t want anything for my birthday this year. There just wasn’t anything I could think of that I really needed or wanted and I didn’t just want “stuff” just because, so I didn’t ask for anything.